Delta Airlines Appears to be Rolling Qualifying Dollars (MQD) into 2021

Delta was the first, if not one of the first airlines, to extend elite medallion benefits to all of their members during the Coronavirus pandemic this year. They realized fairly quickly that their elite travelers would be flying less, and if they wanted to keep their business in 2020 and beyond, they should make sure that hard earned status doesn’t go anywhere for next year.

While they mentioned that all MQM (medallion qualifying miles) would roll over to next year and you could keep your status earned in 2019 through all of 2021, what they didn’t mention was the MQD (Medallion Qualifying Dollars). In order to hit Platinum or Diamond status, you’ve got to hit a spend requirement or credit card spend.

It would appear that even though it’s not up on their website as of yet, that Delta will be extending the MQD’s and credit card spend all the way through 2021, giving you a full 24 months to hit those numbers.

Qualification and Waivers

As you can see from the above photo, the status is listed carom Feb 01, 2021 until Jan 31,  2022. At the same time, the MQM and Card Spend track correctly, and the fine print states that you have “from January 1 to December 31 every year to qualify for Medallion Status.”

Delta’s Covid page for Elite Medallion members makes plenty of mention about qualifying miles, status, and the like, but leaves out MQD’s and Card Spend.

I decided to head to Twitter to get a little more insight about this, since I didn’t think I would hit 250,000 on my credit cards this year, especially since I’m traveling a lot less for business. With that said, it may be entirely possible for me to hit that amount over a two-year period, especially if I know that I have until next year to make that goal.

The Twitter Messages

I asked the @Delta twitter machine the following question

Hey y’all. Question in regard to MQD. Do I have until the end of 2021 to hit the credit card $250k waiver? Will the spend in 2020 also count until 2021?

And the responses were amazing. Much more than I thought…

Hi there, yes that’s correct. What you spend in 2020 you will have available in 2021.

Well, color me surprised! Just to confirm, I mentioned that if I hit 110k this year would I only 140 for next year. And he confirmed.

Why this matters

Hitting the MQM necessary for Diamond status, especially with the Delta American Express credit cards, is not difficult. But spending $250,000 a year in a card, with so many better options for my credit card spend, is a tough pill to swallow.

Knowing ahead of time that I can shift spend, especially un-bonused spend, from other credit cards, allows me to plan ahead and make sure that I can hit the $250k and I MIGHT just get that Diamond Status I’ve been chasing for so many years.

With the Reserve credit cards, you can earn 60,000 MQM each year, and with the Platinum Cards, you can earn 20,000 MQM each year.

Delta Reserve for Business (signup link)

Delta Platinum for Business (signup link)

Does this change your outlook on Delta Diamond status and using credit cards to get there?

Author: Jon Nickel-D'Andrea

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9 Comments

  1. Awesome! And very smart of Delta…

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  2. We’re sure this applies to MQD as well as card spend? ‘Cause those are kinda different things…

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    • Well I did ask about MQD and CC spend in my message so… I’m gonna go for yes? We sure can hope so.

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    • Fingers crossed!

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      • Hi! Thanks for messaging with Delta! My name is Mikelle, how may I assist you today?

        At this time, the ability to roll over MQDs or MQS’ is not a current benefit of the Medallion program

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        • So do we trust Mikelle or Tyler

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  3. I jumped through all the hoops and reached DM for 2021 in Jan this year. I have not flown since and have no clue when I’ll fly again. With more than 500K MQMs I had planned to down grade my Delta Reserve card to Platinum in Dec and settle for Platinum status for 2022. Carrying over spend through 2021 would be a game changer. If it happens I’ll keep my Reserve Card along with my Diamond status.

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    • I’m with you. The reserve card has made qualifying that much easier, even if I don’t get diamond I’ll have about three years of platinum.

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  4. I thought this might be the case so I kept accumulating, mostly via spending of course. Add to that the new offer on many Delta AMEX cards that appeared yesterday wherein you can earn 500 Skymiles AND all-important MQM’s per $1000 spend on top of the usual $30K spend threshhold bonuses. I foresee a decent amount of Platinums and Diamonds given two years to accumulate.

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  1. Delta is NOT Rolling Over MQD or Amex Spend to 2021 - Renés Points - […] I was (very pleasantly) surprised last night when I saw this post from fellow Boarding Area blogger Jon Nickel-D’Andrea…

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